Not so Happy Feet

Happy feet is a wonderful children's movie about how a misfit emperor penguin goes on a journey to find out where all of the fish have gone. In the process he nearly dies a few times and is abducted by aliens (that's us), Tries to communicate to the aliens that the food is gone, and eventually returns home where the food supply is restored.

On the surface this seems to be just be another animated film about how being unique is a good thing, and how in order for society to work we need everyone's skills. But if you look at this movie from a different perspective you see humans and our actions from the penguin's point of view.

We always seem to think of penguins as these soft, cuddly, cute creatures who are so alike us because they are monogamous, and share parenting between the partners. They seem to be so like us that we don't think anything of capturing them and putting them in our zoos. But Happy Feet really starts to show how wrong that view is, and how hard humans have made their life, both inside and outside of captivity.

Happy Feet shows how crazy people went over this little tap dancing penguin when he was in captivity. They loved him and everybody wanted to see him. But at the same time, these were some of the same people who were responsible for the pollution that was in the water, the soda can rings that got stuck on a penguins neck, the over fishing that was causing the penguins to starve.

This movie shines a light on the responsibilities that come with being a human in today's time. It shows us that we have a responsibility to preserve the habitats and food of other species. It shows us that yes we have tamed this wild but it makes us question if we had to destroy it when we tamed it.

When Happy Feet first came out in 2006, I remember how excited everyone was to see it, I mean it looked like an adorable movie. I also remember how I felt, and how others felt after watching it. We all felt a little guiltily, like maybe it was our fault that Mumble had been captured, or that his family was starving. I remember wanting to do something, something that would somehow keep the wilds that they lived in safe from us. But I was only 14 and didn't know what to do beyond cutting the plastic rings on soda can holders.